Systemic Racism

Turtle Island Systemic Racism

systemic racism

Systemic racism is a form of racism that is embedded through legislation, regulations and policies creating discrimination that can lead to personal and individual racism against people of Turtle Island ancestry.

The genealogy of the Mi’kmaq Tribe reveals a change from a sovereign and equal partnership with foreign emigrants trading in Mi’kma’ki, Turtle Island in 1610, to systemic racial practices on August 1, 1722.

Inclusion to Exclusion

On August 1, 1722,  King George I, of Great Britain, military governor, Richard Philip, issued a proclamation to foreign emigrants working in Mi’kma’ki, Turtle Island, making it illegal for a foreign emigrant to entertain a Mi’kmaq person in any manner.

Minutes from a May 22, 1725, meeting show how strictly this was enforced.

 “The Honorable Lt. Governor, John Doucett acquainted the board that Prudans Robichau, senior inhabitant in the Cape, had entertained an Indian in his house, contrary to his Excellency’s proclamation, dated August 1, 1722.  “That he had therefore “put him in irons and in prison among the Indians for committing such a heinous misdemeanor”. 

A petition by Robichau for release was then presented to Council for approval:  “The said petition being read and considered, it is the opinion of the board, upon account of his age, and having been so long in irons, that upon the offers and promised he made in his petition of putting up as security goods and other chattels for his future good behavior, he be set free.” 

The Robichau (Robichaud) family emigrated to Mi’kma’ki, Turtle Island, 80 years prior to this “policy announcement”.   Family members of the (Robichaud) Robichau family, born and baptized Catholic, in Mi’kma’ki, Turtle Island are married into the Penobscot and Mi’kmaq Tribes of Turtle Island.

Systemic practices demonstrated in foreign records evolved over time into legislation and law, contributing to 533  years of  the human rights violations of the people of Turtle Island ancestry in Turtle Island.

Individual and Inter-Personal Racism

Systemic racism acts like a building block for the general population to feel comfortable to display individual and inter-personal racism against people of the Turtle Island ancestry.

Systemic racism is evident in civil records after the creation of the Indian Act government program.  In the records those who lived on reserve became basket makers, doing “Indian business” and in one case listed under occupation as, “being an Indian” and on yet another record occupation is listed as “squaw”.

People of Turtle Island ancestry are “Indians”.  Indians get everything for free.  All Indians are alcoholics.  Indians don’t pay taxes.  Racial stereotypes that result in inter-personal racism.

        • Racial jokes.
        • No assistance to people of Turtle Island ancestry in medical distress.
        • Beatings, harassment, threats, and rape.
        • Missing and murdered girls and women of Turtle Island ancestry.

The anger of some Canadians over the cost of the “Indian Act and the lands reserved for Indians” federal government program is often scapegoated to people of Turtle Island ancestry instead of the elected representatives of the federal government.

Tax is not charged on reserve because the federal government does not charge itself goods and service tax for the financial administration of federally held reserved lands, military bases and federal parks.